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Cataract couching and the goat's eye.
Acta Ophthalmol. 2018 Nov; 96(7):755-756.AO

Abstract

At the start of the third century, a story told by Claudius Aelianus, Leonidas of Alexandria and pseudo-Galen held that couching originated when a goat with cataract punctured its eye with a thorn. The significance of this story is unknown. We reviewed Graeco-Roman texts to identify the relevance of the goat to the eye. In the works of Hippocrates, Aristotle and Galen, the goat's eye was an eye with intermediate brightness or colour. A dark brown eye with a black pupil was healthy and required no treatment. A bright glaukos eye, with extensive corneal edema or scarring, was not amenable to couching. An eye with a white cataract behind an undilated pupil would appear to have an intermediate brightness and was potentially amenable to couching. The origin myth probably arose when an instructor explained that couching works best for a goat's eye, that is, an eye with intermediate brightness.

Authors+Show Affiliations

Department of Ophthalmology, Virginia Commonwealth University, Richmond, VA, USA.Department of Ophthalmology, Bascom Palmer Eye Institute, University of Miami Miller School of Medicine, Naples, FL, USA.Department of Ophthalmology, Virginia Commonwealth University, Richmond, VA, USA.Department of Ophthalmology, Virginia Commonwealth University, Richmond, VA, USA.

Pub Type(s)

Historical Article
Journal Article

Language

eng

PubMed ID

30259681

Citation

Leffler, Christopher T., et al. "Cataract Couching and the Goat's Eye." Acta Ophthalmologica, vol. 96, no. 7, 2018, pp. 755-756.
Leffler CT, Schwartz SG, Peterson E, et al. Cataract couching and the goat's eye. Acta Ophthalmol. 2018;96(7):755-756.
Leffler, C. T., Schwartz, S. G., Peterson, E., & Busscher, J. (2018). Cataract couching and the goat's eye. Acta Ophthalmologica, 96(7), 755-756. https://doi.org/10.1111/aos.13839
Leffler CT, et al. Cataract Couching and the Goat's Eye. Acta Ophthalmol. 2018;96(7):755-756. PubMed PMID: 30259681.
* Article titles in AMA citation format should be in sentence-case
TY - JOUR T1 - Cataract couching and the goat's eye. AU - Leffler,Christopher T, AU - Schwartz,Stephen G, AU - Peterson,Eric, AU - Busscher,Joshua, Y1 - 2018/09/26/ PY - 2017/08/18/received PY - 2018/05/07/accepted PY - 2018/9/28/pubmed PY - 2018/12/12/medline PY - 2018/9/28/entrez KW - cataract surgery KW - galen KW - glaucoma KW - medical history SP - 755 EP - 756 JF - Acta ophthalmologica JO - Acta Ophthalmol VL - 96 IS - 7 N2 - At the start of the third century, a story told by Claudius Aelianus, Leonidas of Alexandria and pseudo-Galen held that couching originated when a goat with cataract punctured its eye with a thorn. The significance of this story is unknown. We reviewed Graeco-Roman texts to identify the relevance of the goat to the eye. In the works of Hippocrates, Aristotle and Galen, the goat's eye was an eye with intermediate brightness or colour. A dark brown eye with a black pupil was healthy and required no treatment. A bright glaukos eye, with extensive corneal edema or scarring, was not amenable to couching. An eye with a white cataract behind an undilated pupil would appear to have an intermediate brightness and was potentially amenable to couching. The origin myth probably arose when an instructor explained that couching works best for a goat's eye, that is, an eye with intermediate brightness. SN - 1755-3768 UR - https://www.unboundmedicine.com/medline/citation/30259681/Cataract_couching_and_the_goat's_eye_ DB - PRIME DP - Unbound Medicine ER -